The September Basho
From: Sunday, September 9 2007, 7:00 am
to: Sunday, September 23 2007, 3:00 pm
The greatest Sumo wrestlers in Japan, and therefore the world, meet for the September Basho at Kokugikan Sumo Hall, one of the year's six Grand Tournaments.
Sumo is one of Japan's most popular sports and is steeped in legend, history and ceremony. To the outsider it can seem like a mere battle of strength and power but, it should be remembered, this is a sport with over 70 different throws, trips, forms and tricks. Only when these are mastered will the wrestler stand a chance of becoming a Yokuzuna (a grand champion)
As a spectacle Sumo is amazing. The men are giants and when they collide the forces at work are beyond comprehension. In front of packed house they attempt to eject each other from the 4.5 metre circle or throw each other to the hard clay floor. The backdrop to the action provides constant reminders of the history and reverence of the occasion, from the Gyoji's (the referee's) fan - a sign of authority - to the symbolic salt scattering before each contest.